While the move will help Facebook offer more targeted advertisements on its own platform, WhatsApp will continue to be ad-free, a WhatsApp spokesperson told PTI.
Privacy advocates had raised concerns that Facebook would start mining WhatsApp accounts for data. However, both the companies have maintained that WhatsApp would operate separately from the parent company and that its user data would not be shared without users’ consent.
WhatsApp has over one billion users globally, with a significant chunk coming from India. Facebook also runs photo-sharing platform, Instagram.
“As part of the Facebook family of companies, WhatsApp receives information from, and shares information with, this family of companies. We may use the information we receive from them, and they may use the information we share with them to help operate, provide, improve, understand, customise, support, and market our services and their offerings,” the spokesperson said.